This dish is a real crowd pleasure and everyone at the table will be asking for seconds! It's packed with protein and nutritious vegetables and makes for delicious leftovers!
It's a quick and easy one pot meal that can be in the oven in under 30 minutes. Colorful vegetables and fresh flavors will turn this Tex-Mex Chicken Bake into a family favorite in no time!
This dish is super flexible so feel free to exclude, switch up, or add in any vegetables, herbs, or seasonings you wish.
- Chicken thighs - bone-in, skin on. You can use any pieces of chicken you like. I do recommend at least leaving the skin on for extra flavour.
- White onion - you can also use yellow, sweet, or Spanish onions
- Red pepper - or any colour of bell pepper
- Zucchini - or summer squash
- Corn - frozen or fresh kernals
- Salsa - My favourite is Organic Jack's Cantina Salsa but any fresh, store bought, salsa will work. One jarred option that is good is Herdez brand but most others tend to be more like a sauce then a salsa.
- Cilantro - You can omit this if you're not a fan or substitute with fresh parsley.
- Old cheddar cheese - You can substitute with any type of cheddar, Monterey Jack or a combination.
- Green onions/scallions - These are an optional garnish added at the end for freshness.
- Sour cream - An optional garnish. You could also add guacamole or fresh avocado slices.
- Chicken thighs - can be replaced with chicken breasts. Cooking time will vary.
- Cilantro - omit or use fresh parsley
- Cheddar Cheese - use any kind of melting cheese or replace with a dairy free alternative.
- Vegetables - you can make this dish with any vegetables you like. This combo is classicly Tex-Mex.
- Corn - a great substitute for corn in this recipe is green peas, mushrooms, or simply omit the corn altogether.
For another one-pan chicken dish with a different flavour profile try my Mediterranean Chicken Bake.
Make it Vegetarian
To make this dish vegetarian simply omit the chicken and add 1 - 2 cans of black beans. Add the beans at the time you would add back in the chicken, before baking in the oven.
To make it Vegan, do the same but use vegan cheddar or omit the cheese.
Keep covered in the fridge for 3 days or freeze for up to 3 months.
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Tex-Mex Chicken Bake
- 6 chicken thighs, bone-in, skin on
- 1 large white onion, peeled and diced
- 1 large red bell pepper, or any colour, diced
- 1 large zucchini, diced
- 2 large cloves garlic, finely chopped, 1 tbsp.
- ½ teaspoon ground cumin
- 1 teaspoon chili powder
- 1 cup fresh or frozen corn kernels
- 2 cups salsa
- salt and pepper to taste
- 1 small bunch cilantro, washed and rough chopped. Divide in two portions. One half is for garnish
- 150 g or about 2 cups Old cheddar cheese, grated
- 2-3 green onions, sliced, for garnish
- Sour cream
- guacamole or avocado
- pickled jalapenos
- Preheat oven to 400 degrees F.
- Season chicken thighs on both sides with salt and pepper.
- Heat olive oil in large sauté pan over medium-high heat.
- Add chicken thighs, skin side down and set sear, without moving them, for 4-5 minutes or until golden brown. Flip over and sear the other side for 3-4 minutes more or until golden brown.
- Remove chicken to a large plate or dish and set aside.
- Add diced onion to the pan with the oil and fat from the chicken. Saute, stirring occasionally, for about 5 minutes or until soft and glossy.
- Add diced zucchini, red pepper, garlic, cumin, and chili powder. Continue cooking and stirring occasionally for 3-4 minutes.
- Add corn and cook for 2 more minutes. Add salsa and half the chopped cilantro. Taste and add salt and pepper as needed.
- Bring to a boil and reduce heat to a simmer. Nestle chicken pieces into the vegetable mixture.
- Top with grated cheddar leaving the chicken skin exposed.
- Bake in preheated oven for 30 minutes or until a thermometer reads 165 degrees F.
- Top with remaining cilantro and sliced green onions.
- Serve on it's own or with rice or quinoa. Top with sour cream and/or guacamole.
- STORAGE - Keep covered in the fridge for 3 days or freeze for up to 3 months.
- SUBSTITUTIONS – Black beans, tofu, or shrimp work well in place of chicken. Use any combination of vegetables you like.
- MAKE IT VEGETARIAN - Omit the chicken and add 1 - 2 cans of black beans. Add the beans in step # 9. Or slice a block of firm tofu and follow recipe as is, browning the tofu first.